It's sometimes overwhelming to book a hotel in Makati City for a layover or long stay, whether for leisure or business, even if you've already tried some of the most popular ones. City Garden Hotel Makati makes it easy for mindful travelers like me to choose it over a glut of options because it's just one of three hotels in Metro Manila I know that doesn't have service charge in its room rate. At the same time, a stay at this 160-room high-rise feels like it's first class when it's actually just mid-range. As a result, guests are rewarded with wonderful surprises from useful room features to elaborate service when least expected. And because there's adequate staffing for its mid-range coverage, staff members are highly responsive and guests tend to feel secure in its home-away-from-home ambiance. If that's not enough balance between affordability and luxury, I don't know what is!
Apart from being strategically located in Makati City where the quirky Poblacion district is just a stroll away, it's also accessible from various points of Metro Manila's essential spots. It's less than an hour from NAIA International and Domestic Airport. With Greenbelt, Glorietta, Power Plant Mall & Rockwell being less than 30 minutes away, shopping for supplies is quite convenient. No wonder a lot of foreign tourists on business and backpack mode prefer it over other hotels in the area.
|Booked Executive Deluxe Room|
|The view of Makati City from my booked room|
Room rate is inclusive of access to a roof deck swimming pool, gym, plus spa and sauna. It also comes with access to high-speed Wi-Fi and complimentary valet parking. Guests can choose from a variety of room types -- Superior Room, Executive Room, Deluxe Room, Executive Superior Room and Executive Deluxe Room. What's more, check-in is allowed as early as when the guest is available to do so even before the standard check-in time. As long as there's an available room, hotel staff members guarantee that they will make it possible for a smooth early check-in.
|The hotel lobby|
|Sunset view from the hotel room|
|The hotel lobby|
|Hotel front desk|
After learning that the hotel recently finished renovating all of its guest rooms to keep up with the City Garden brand's modern and upscale look, I finally booked myself an Executive Deluxe Room for a weekend stay. The room type was an easy choice for me because all of the rooms have bathtubs anyway, so the space and view of my chosen type seemed to be perfect as add-on value to the rate.
|15 floors up in Makati City|
|(top left) Foot spa at La Famosa Wellness Spa; (bottom right) Welcome fruits|
|The roof deck swimming pool|
|All room types at the hotel have a bathtub|
Nifty Room Details
I loved that the room has an available flat iron and ironing board, extra pillows, extra blanket and bath robe which are normally the stuff of first class hotels. For room view, I had a stunning sight of the Makati Business District, a part of Bel-Air Village and the rest of the city 15 floors up.
|City view from the pool|
|Buffet breakfast at Bistro|
The room rate was also inclusive of a buffet breakfast for two guests at Bistro, the hotel's F&B facility that's located at the second floor. The buffet spread, as I've tested, was adequate and the ultra-cheesy omelette is a must-have twice regardless if you're feeling greedy in the morning or just on a cheat day. Guests can even request for unique orders like danggit or other seasonal food that are not readily available on display if they have a particular diet to maintain and for as long as the supplies are in stock.
For other meals in other times of the day, guests need not step out of the hotel. It has Encima, its roof deck restaurant that's located next to the pool. It opens as early as 4:00pm for afternoon meals up to nighttime for dinner.
|(top left) Bathtub moment; (top right) Foot spa; (bottom right) In-room massage|
|City view from the hotel gym|
To calm my nerves of stress, I tried the hotel's spa service via its La Famosa Wellness Spa. I had my relaxing massage inside my room instead of the actual massage bed at the spa (a few floors up from my room at the 15th floor) although I know a friend of mine who'd do it otherwise if he was booked at the hotel. This is because the spa is right next to the gym which is of great convenience after a workout. I found out about the gym and its spectacular city view when I decided to have a foot spa at La Famosa an hour before my check-out.
All in all, both my in-room Swedish massage and foot spa gave me the relaxation that I needed during my stay. The massage therapists gave impressive service in that they managed to clue me in on some of my body's needs health-wise from the typical dos and don'ts to the interesting pressure points in my body that correspond to certain health conditions. I've been to more than a dozen of wellness centers all over the Philippines (mostly Luzon and Visayas) and it was only here where I actually had a massage session that also felt like an engaging doctor consultation which was a great thing for me.
City Garden Hotel Makati
Official website of City Garden Hotel
Address: 7870 Makati Avenue corner Durban St., Poblacion Makati City, Philippines
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